* Heart of Illinois ABC…
Illinois state senator, Darren Bailey, joined the Tenth annual Tent-A-thon hosted by Pastor Corey Brooks. The Tent-A-Thon is a part of Pastor Brooks H.O.O.D foundation (Helping Others Obtain Destiny). The program consists of fifteen projects focused on violence prevention, entrepreneurship, and job training.
Pastor Brooks invites community leaders, politicians and parents to camp out on his roof Tent-A-Thon to bring awareness to violence.
Senator Bailey camped out and held a press conference the next morning about his experience.
“We were camping out in a tent at the end of this platform last night. At two o’clock in the morning we heard gunshots. These gunshots less than a hundred yards over. I’m laying there thinking, okay that surely was something else. About fifteen minutes later I heard a female voice screaming he’s been shot,” said Bailey.
He apparently didn’t call the police, which is odd. I think if I heard a nearby woman screaming that somebody had been shot, I’d call 911.
* But let’s get to the point, which is that Bailey is apparently unaware that the state is already doing something that he wants it to do, and is actually increasing the funding.
Here’s what Bailey said at yesterday’s Project H.O.O.D event…
Government has got to start working with 501(c)(3)s, with non for profit organizations. This is how we change Illinois. This is how we change our society. Government is not the answer.
Except, that’s exactly what government does. The state doesn’t directly employ violence interrupters. It awards grants to groups like Communities Partnering 4 Peace, a project of Metropolitan Family Services. Those groups vet neighborhood organizations’ programs and award them money.
From the Project H.O.O.D website…
With newly gained funding and partnership with CP4P, Project H.O.O.D. has launched a new violence reduction initiative that targets the Woodlawn community.
* According to the governor’s office, the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority has awarded $6,094,300 to Metropolitan Family Services for its violence reduction projects starting in 2019. Of that, $5.87 million has gone to CP4P. If you look at the CP4P website, you’ll see that Project H.O.O.D. is one of 28 neighborhood groups that have received grant money for anti-violence programs.
And, as this Project H.O.O.D. video claims, the group is having success with its crime reduction programs.
* Pastor Brooks is raising money to help build a new facility. He was close to Gov. Rauner, and even got an appointment to the tollway board. Todd Ricketts, who recently resigned as RNC finance chair, is a recent contributor. Republican gubernatorial candidate Gary Rabine is also a recent camper. And Jesse Sullivan is a supporter as well.
Nothing wrong with any of that. More power to the man if he’s raising money for a good cause. They can afford it for sure. But he allowed Bailey to take some campaign shots yesterday, so just keep all that in mind.
* From the governor’s office…
• In his first year in office, Gov. Pritzker increased investments in programs to interrupt and prevent violence by $50 million. In addition, this year’s budget invests $128 million in violence prevention and summer youth employment programs.
• The General Assembly passed and the Governor signed legislation to create an Office of Violence Prevention.
• Under Governor Pritzker’s leadership, the State Police started a gun violence task force. Governor Pritzker is also adding hundreds of new troopers to the depleted ranks of the State Police, building a new state-of-the-art forensics facility to investigate crimes and tackled the rape kit backlog left behind by his predecessor.
• The Governor continues to offer and make available Illinois State Police and has invested in increased state police patrols of the highways, cameras, forensics labs and in reducing evidence backlogs that assist substantially in solving crimes.
• On top of rebuilding our social safety net, the budgets signed by Gov. Pritzker have provided hundreds of millions of additional dollars to local governments and community-based organizations to support vulnerable communities.
Maybe Bailey ought to start reading state budgets before voting against them and then literally shooting them for fun.
…Adding… This would’ve been a much better headline…